Horrible Circumstance

Emotional TikTok describes shooting at high school, raises awareness

Mikaela Georgi, Copy Editor

“If you’re wondering what it’s like to be a teacher in America right now…” begins ‘Mrs. E’ before discussing an event that occurred on January 19, 2022.

In a now-viral TikTok, ‘E’ went on to describe the circumstances surrounding a three-hour lockdown during sixth period at Seminole High School. Although she later found out that the police had declared it an “isolated incident,” she explained that she had no idea what was going on for two out of three hours of the lockdown, just that she and her students were facing becoming “another name” in the trend of school shootings.

Struggling to get her words out past her tears, ‘E’ knew that, although their classmate had just been shot, her students would be expected to arrive at school the next day and engage in “business as usual.”

She described the things she’d seen upon their dismissal from the lockdown: students too scared to step away for fear of getting shot, police officers lining the halls with guns, reporters fighting to get interviews, and children swarming away from the school.

Being trapped for so long caused ‘E’ to begin to feel helpless. She desired to protect her students, but she did not know how. After leaving the school, she went to Target to pick up snacks for her students to watch a movie the next day because they were still expected to go to school. Adding insult to injury, she commented on how she could not even afford the treats she was purchasing for her students because of her teacher’s salary.

There are a myriad of stories just like ‘E’s, stories that describe the helplessness a teacher feels in such a situation; the desire to help their students, but the inability to do anything.

Because of the repeated occasions of such an incident, one parent quoted by WESH said that her child, “[knew] what to do, because she’s been through this before.”

Though this has happened before, as ‘E’ mentioned, this is America. And the shame following the normalization of these events will follow America.



Crime unit vehicle sets up post outside the school following the shooting. (Courtesy of Orlando Sentinel )